The rumors look like they are very true. For years, there have been whispers about Apple diving headfirst into the car business and now they are admitting it. The tech giant is close to finalizing a deal with Hyundai-Kia to manufacture an autonomous electric vehicle that will be Apple branded. The good news for Tim Cook’s company is they vehicles will be built at a Kia assembly plant in Georgia.
The date that was thrown out recently of 2024 seems to be accurate, as the Apple Car is tentatively set to go into production in three years, though it could be pushed back if any snags come in finalizing the deal.
While this deal is close to being commenced, CNBC reported that the agreement is not final, and Apple could still ultimately decide to partner with another automaker. “I doubt Hyundai is the only automaker they could strike a deal with, there could be somebody else,” a source told CNBC.
Apple’s stock jumped 2% on the news. Investors are rooting for Apple to go all-in on an Electric vehicle, since the global auto mobility market is valued at $10 trillion. Katie Huberty, a Morgan Stanley analyst put that into perspective on CNBC recently. “Smartphones are a $500bn annual TAM. Apple has about one-third of this market. The mobility market is $10 trillion. So Apple would only need a 2% share of this market to be the size of their iPhone business.”
By the way, don’t be fooled into thinking that this will be a Kia model with an Apple logo on the back bumper. Reportedly Apple is working with Hyundai-Kia so they can control the stroller and hardware that will go into the vehicle.